Phil Kerpen Profile picture
14 May, 32 tweets, 15 min read
Friday Fluday Thread: Influenza-Like Illness Data for MMWR Week 18, ending May 8, 2021
United States Influenza testing, MMWR week 18.

CDC flu view.…

2016 to 2019 4-year average: 853 cases; 7.09% positive

2020: 46; 0.57%
2021: 23; 0.07%… Image
United States Influenza testing, season to date (32 weeks, MMWR 40 to 18)

Five-year average: 208,466 cases; 18.28% positive

This year: 2,097; 0.14% Image
Season-to-date U. S. flu hospitalizations down 98.9% from last year.

Flu hospitalizations (32 weeks) in FluSurv-NET catchment is 226 (+0 from last week). Through week 18 last year (31 weeks) it was 20,094 (+56).

Rate last year: 69.2 per 100K
This year: 0.8 per 100K ImageImage
Influenza-Like Illness (ILI) continues to be historically low after a skied season; ticked up this week (HCoVs?). Image
Latest U.S. non-SARS-CoV2 syndromic data from BioFire.

Lots of rhinoviruses (just ticked down, potential peak forming?) and some adenoviruses all year.

Flu A, B micro-wave already over. RSV, and PIV back at low levels.

HCoVs comeback continues. ImageImage
Out-of-season HCoV wave continues.

HCoV NL-63 appears post-peak but has turned back up. HCoV-OC43 still rising sharply. HCoV-229E rising at lower levels. Last year's dominant HCoV-HKU1 still near zero. Image
Here are the HCoVs with SARS-CoV2, from Biofire's newest respiratory panel.

SARS-CoV2 peaked and declined as the HCoVs re-appeared and rose. Image
CDC data shows the same picture.… Image
CDC HCoVs by region.… ImageImageImageImage
Florida. Schools open all year. No lockdowns since September. Rhinoviruses and adenoviruses all year.

Flu declined in the one region that had any.

ILI remains flat.

RSV ED visits flat; finally a peak?… ImageImageImageImage
Sweden week 18. No masks, no lockdowns, no school closures under age 16 -- and a full year with no Flu A, Flu B, or RSV; RSV ticks up again after reappearing finally four weeks ago. HCoVs flat, remain higher than seasonal norm after long absence.… ImageImageImageImage
Germany week 18. Rhinoviruses tick back up. Slight decrease for HCoVs and decrease for SARS-CoV2, first time in 5 weeks they haven't moved in opposite directions.… Image
Brazil. Very lax control measures, and a president who urges people to disregard them. A completely skipped flu season.… Image
The global flu chart from WHO.… Image
It wasn't masks, which were never used in many countries where flu disappeared and have also been shown to be ineffective for stopping influenza in many, many studies.… Image
Japan masks every year, and pushed masks hard in 2019 with no apparent effect. But in 2020-21 flu disappeared with low stringency COVID intervention.… Image
The idea mitigations worked but unmitigated SARS-CoV2 just has a higher R (popular now among the same crowd that still said "twindemic!" when flu had been gone for months, like Anthony "mask seasonally" Fauci) is way too facile. Image
Outside of testing ramp up, I don't think we've seen R > 2, even in places without NPIs.

Rhinoviruses bounced right back despite lower R and RSV was gone until recently with comparable R to SARS-CoV2.

HCoVs were gone until SARS-CoV2 declined, then returned even with lockdown.
Plus, as Biden adviser Dr. Michael Osterholm admitted, our mitigation just hasn't been very effective.

Maybe in places like Australia and New Zealand where mitigations stopped SARS-CoV2 they also stopped other viruses.

But in countries where SARS-CoV2 went wild? No. Image
Osterholm: "There is this viral interference"
Viral interference is a well-known (but poorly understood) phenomenon. Interference from rhinovirus is generally thought to have ended the swine flu epidemic in 2009.…
This great short article from @m_soond explains the viral interference theory of this respiratory season.…
Overall the season has been so mild that drug store chains took big losses.

Rite Aid CEO Heyward Donigan: "During the fourth quarter our industry was impacted by a historically soft cough, cold and flu season."…
Pediatric internships and residencies have to be extended or supplemented because they just didn't have enough patients to gain the normal amount of clinical experience.…
CDC still reports just one pediatric flu death this season. Image
The numbers in chart in previous tweet are lab-confirmed only, but flu testing is very limited (see totals at top of thread) so CDC also publishes best estimates of total pediatric flu deaths.…
COVID testing is much, much more abundant than flu testing and the definition of deaths typically used (any cause of death within 30-60 days of a positive test result) tends to overcount.
Per CDC, 2.5% of all death certificates in the COVID count have a cause of death that cannot plausibly be connected to COVID.

But that figure is much higher for younger age groups: 35.2% under age 18 and 10.2% 18 to 29.… Image
Keeping that in mind, this table compares CDC best estimates of pediatric flu deaths with the first two seasons of pediatric COVID deaths as reported.

(Note that everywhere in the world where COVID was epidemic, it circulated *instead of*, not in addition to, influenza.) Image
We are now near the end of the *safest* respiratory season for children ever recorded. (Including places where schools never closed and nobody masked.)

Yet many places locked children out of school, and some places are still doing so. Many more kids are masked.

It's a disgrace.

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More from @kerpen

16 May
The only thing CDC has been consistent about is their insane anti-children, anti-science take on everything. Disgraceful.
Read 4 tweets
15 May
CDC says a lot of stupid and nonsensical things.

Maybe somebody in your teachers union understands basic arithmetic enough to explain this to you.

Even if the vaccines are 97% effective, the mortality risk for an unvaccinated child is lower than for vaccinated adults over 30. Image
Teachers unions demanded closures and masks long after it had been crystal clear COVID risk to kids was near zero. Because they could (though seldom did) infect adults.

Now all the adults have been offered vaccination! Enough!
And "the CDC says" from the same entity that corrupted the February schools guidance, overruling science with politics. I mean, really???
Read 5 tweets
15 May
This maniac still issuing absurd anti-child anti-science dictates.

This makes absolutely zero sense.

Even if the vaccines are 97% effective, the mortality risk for an unvaccinated child is lower than for vaccinated adults over 30.
And masking kids never been evidence-based anyway:…
Unvaccinated children are at even lower risk than nearly all vaccinated adults.

There is no "infect grandma" scare story because she's been vaccinated.

There is no scientific case for anything but normal school.

Read 6 tweets
14 May
Every age from 1 to 17 had an observed population fatality ratio of less than 1 in 100,000.
If we assume (based on latest UK estimate) that full mRNA vaccination lowers mortality 97%, unvaccinated children have mortality risk similar to vaccinated 30 year olds -- and far, far less than vaccinated older adults. 100 times lower than vaccinated 75+.
Should probably roll this back to an end date before the vaccine was available, but that would only make the point more strongly.
Read 5 tweets
7 May
Friday Fluday Thread: Influenza-Like Illness Data for MMWR Week 17, ending May 1, 2021
United States Influenza testing, MMWR week 17.

CDC flu view.…

2016 to 2019 4-year average: 1,243 cases; 8.50% positive
2020: 48; 0.41%
2021: 15; 0.05%… Image
United States Influenza testing, season to date (31 weeks, MMWR 40 to 17)

Five-year average: 206,764 cases; 18.45% positive

This year: 2,059; 0.14% Image
Read 34 tweets
4 May
The original (much worse than reality) Ferg model that shut down the world estimated R0 at 2.4.

Classic SIR formula of HIT = 1 - (1/R0) at 2.4 yield HIT of 58.3%.
Israel first dose as of today (58.15%) is still short of that and positivity rate went under 1% on April 4. If we look two weeks earlier than that on March 21 Israel was at 55.72% first dose and 49.16% fully vaxed. And decline was steep earlier.…
It is likely that very soon, perhaps today, Massachusetts and Vermont will be the first states to have a higher percent of total pop first dosed than Israel. And we likely have much more natural immunity than Israel from larger past waves. ~125 million Americans.
Read 4 tweets

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